With the festive presentation of three Snellen charts, the Eye Care Foundation has started a collaboration with three Surinamese hospitals on Friday, the 4th of February. The Eye Care Foundation, an Amsterdam NGO in the field of ophthalmology, will work together with Academic Hospital Suriname, Sint Vincentius Hospital, and Wanica Hospital to limit unnecessary blindness and treat visual impairment in Suriname.
On behalf of the Eye Care Foundation, Audrey Moestadja handed over the Snellen card to Jason van Gelderen at the Wanica Hospital on Friday afternoon. The Snellen charts are printed charts that help ophthalmologists measure the eyesight of patients. Later in the day, the group left for the Academic Hospital to hand over the Snellen charts there too.
Björn Stenvers, CEO at Eye Care Foundation; “We are currently making an extensive analysis, support is certainly needed in Suriname in the field of eye care. Suriname has only 16 ophthalmologists. All the more reason to support our colleagues there.”
90% of eye diseases are preventable
The Surinamese hospitals are happy with the collaboration with the NGO. The Eye Care Foundation has a lot of expertise in the treatment of eye diseases in Tanzania and Vietnam, among others. 2.2 Billion people in the world are visually impaired, 90% of these cases are preventable or treatable, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
The Eye Care Foundation does not want to limit itself to Suriname in the future. The NGO already has a branch in Ecuador and will focus on more countries in South America and the Caribbean in the coming years. The Eye Care Foundation wants to support the local needs of Suriname and Ecuador, among others, based on shared responsibility as a member of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB), part of WHO. Eye Care Foundation is currently mainly active in countries in Asia and Africa.
The collaboration between the three Surinamese hospitals and the Eye Care Foundation has been possible, among other things, thanks to a financial contribution from the Lions Club Amsterdam East and the Lions Club Paramaribo Central.